Raven Darkholme stared outside her penthouse window that overlooked Fifth Avenue and Central Park. The fall foliage was a perfect picture of perfection throughout the city. She brought her champagne glass to her painted red lips while her two friends Jubilee Farkas, and Angel Salvadore yammered on beside her about some apparently hot barista that worked at the local Starbucks; as if she really wanted to weigh in on some coffee scented public school boy who was probably destined to be a guitar slinging life is love nobody, not when she had her own super-hot boyfriend of two years. Speaking of…
She turned away from the window where she had been people watching to scan the inhabitants of the dinner party her mother was hosting, because she had started dating some uptight pansy ass retired military guy and she wanted everyone to be familiar with him. Her aqua marine eyes found the object of her affections standing next to said retired military guy. Erik Lensherr for all intents and purposes looked like he wanted to be swallowed up in a black hole. Erik was one of those boys that as cliché as it sounded every guy wanted to be him and every girl wanted to sleep with him. He was the best player on the lax team, spoke five languages fluently including German, Spanish, French, and Italian, has a penchant for leather jackets, and even though he’s also one of those guys that when girls stare they’re thinking ‘she can’t keep her eyes off of me cause I’m so hot.’ It’s not like he could help it. Not with those blue-green eyes, his perfectly styled hair, chiseled facial structure, and even when he smiled he didn’t scare girls away with his trademark shark grin. It added a mischievous side to him, because Erik wasn’t conceited and he didn’t want people thinking he was perfect either. Quite the martyr.
"So have you and Raven done it yet?"
If Erik wasn't the polished socialite he was raised to be he would have coughed up the scotch he was in the process of swallowing. Suddenly he needed something stronger than that. Where was that Alex Summers anyway? He hated when adults said ‘done it’ while referring to sex as if saying the actual word would encourage kids to have sex with the next person that spoke to them. He took in the image of William Stryker, a little too round and grey haired for Manhattan's Elite. His pudgy nose always seemed to carry a shade of pink, but his blue eyes were hard as if you were to make the wrong move he'd make you do pushups naked on the sidewalk. Erik did vaguely recall Raven mentioning that William Stryker was a retired captain, or something. Whatever. She had been bitching about her mother's boyfriend for too much longer than could hold his attention that he resorted to nodding and staring at her breasts.
So how was he supposed to safely answer this without sounding too fake, and without risking some retired GI Joe being constantly on his ass for trying to bed his girlfriend's daughter.
"Honestly, Raven and I have known each other for so long we don't want to jeopardize our relationship by quickly taking things to a physical level"
There that didn't sound rehearsed. The other just nodded and Erik raised the crystal glass to his lips only to see that he drained the rest of his drink faster than he intended. He spotted Cain Marko, one of his friends, purely because once your parents threw a bunch of children in the same pre-school and forced typical high society classes like ballroom dancing, fencing, and piano they made the friends for you. Just like everything else. Poor babies!
Cain Marko was the thorn in their side and his presence could only be taken in small doses. His family was new money, and it was obvious by the way they spent it. Kurt Marko had been some research scientist, but once he met Andrea Appleton who owned The Palace Hotel it was caching from there. Andrea died when Cain was five and the Markos were left with a huge inheritance and the hotel from her will. Kurt also inherited a reputation of a playboy and it seemed his son wanted to replicate that. Virgins of the world beware Cain was the ultimate cherry picker.
Right now Sharon Xavier was stuck with their company, but by the way her eyes were constantly lit with amusement and the way they were trained entirely on Kurt...well...Erik could see where this was heading.
"There you are..."
Erik's attention was shifted to his girlfriend who had captured his hand her designer perfume wafting up to his nose. He breathed her in as she looked up at him leaning her free hand against his chest. Really what she was projecting was...Hands off bitches he's mine!!! Meow!
"I'm sorry William do you mind if I steal this one away?" asked Raven politely blinking her eyes in an innocent manner. "I'm sure my mother would enjoy having your company once again"
"Go right ahead! I'm sure Erik and I will get plenty of opportunities to chat again." he promised while taking Erik's empty glass. He smiled crookedly as Raven and her well trained pearly whites never faltering pulled a relieved Erik with her towards the study. It was near the elevators so no party guests were lingering about. Dinner was about to start anyway. She twisted the knob to the cherry wood door and opened it to reveal a small office which no one had used in almost a year. Raven pushed aside the painful twist in her heart at the reasoning. Once she and Erik were in Raven closed and locked the door.
“What are you doing?” asked Erik with a playful smile in his voice; before she could answer her eyes traveled towards the pocket of his trousers where the familiar tone of one of Gossip Girl’s blast was pinging through. Erik reached for it, but Raven captured that hand as well smiling seductively.
“Seducing you” she answered before rising to her toes and capturing Erik in an alluring kiss. Erik responded quickly moving one of his hands out of her grasp and guiding it down her black pencil skirt to cup her butt. She moaned with pleasure and he smiled into the kiss before pulling back.
“And what has brought this on?” he asked in a whisper watching as a shade of red spread across her cheeks. “I thought you wanted to wait.”
“And I also wanting to do it at the Shangri-La, with champagne, red roses, candles, the whole nine, but,” she returned as she tugged at his yellow tie. “I just want you now, Erik”
Maybe it was the fact that he’s been waiting for this for a very long time, or that with her blonde hair in loose curls, and her sexy librarian outfit she was wearing she looked super hott, but the next thing Erik knew Raven was hiked up on his hips. Her legs curled around his midsection while she promptly nibbled on his ear. Erik moved them to the chaise lounge that was tucked away at a corner and he awkwardly positioned himself on top of her un-tucking her silk cream blouse from the skirt. Raven’s skin was soft, unmarked, but now being riddled with goose bumps as his hand traveled up towards her breasts. She bit her lip and arched her back slightly as he broke the kiss they had been sharing. Erik cocked his head his own face flushed with excitement. Were they really going to have sex? In her father’s study?
“I want you Erik” she repeated softly while closing her eyes. As his hand moved to her thigh under her skirt she let out a shaky breath, and thought about how she couldn’t say no now…wouldn’t say no now. Not before…
“Charles?! Charles Xavier is that you?”
Erik’s hand retreated from under her shirt and he moved off the couch as muffled voices could be heard from outside the door now. Raven sat up and swung her legs over not bothering to be quick about fixing herself up.
“Charles?” whispered Erik absently while turning to Raven. “Did you know he was back?”
“Surprise!” she lied with a put on smile that thankfully because since Erik had his head so far up his ass when it came to knowing her he didn’t catch on. Truthfully, she got the heads up from Hank McCoy a junior from St. Judes Prep that he saw whom he thought to be Charles at Grand Central Station. Raven’s stomach turned and all she had in mind was keeping Erik occupied for as long as she could. Charles had some fucking nerve to show up at her home, with what were probably all smiles, and a trace of his faded English accent. Oh yeah just another thing that made girls swoon over Charles Xavier. Raven stood up and almost stumbled on her Jimmy Choos before making herself more presentable again. Erik was staring at her with a look she couldn’t quite read on his face.
“I’m going to go say hi.” was all he finally said before taking few strides to the door, unlocking it, and leaving her alone. Raven huffed and tucked her hair behind both ears. All would be fine. There is a perfectly good explanation to everything. Yeah right! Who was she kidding? All Raven wanted to do was drink herself into a stupor, maybe eat a whole cake, watch 1930’s films, and destroy Charles Xavier. Well the last part sounded pretty promising. She smoothed out the wrinkles in her clothes and finally emerged from inside the study to see Erik waiting towards the entryway of the living area. Erik moved aside to let her stand in front of him and she caught sight of him. Clothed in distressed blue jeans, a green plaid button down, with white sneakers Charles looked like a far cry from the person that left a year ago. He had too much hair that was untamed to be deemed acceptable in the current social setting, and a light stubble that made him look even more alluring coupled with his naturally red lips, and ocean blue eyes. Even Raven couldn’t help but stare mesmerized at him. Charles pulled away from the hug her mother had engulfed him in and they both turned towards Erik and Raven.
“Raven darling look who’s back in town!” gushed Margaret Darkholme beaming at all three of them. Ugh.
“I can see mother” replied Raven as her and Charles’ eyes met. He shifted embarrassingly under her gaze as if it pained him to even look at her. Good. She could make this as uncomfortable for him as possible. Raven then rushed up and hugged him around the neck as he had a backpack slung around his back. At least he still smelled the same. Always like a hint of grass. “Oh Charles! It is so nice to see you again, it’s been too long”
She could feel how rigid he became at the contact, but he returned the hug. “I agree. We must catch up”
“You’re going to have an easy time finding dates with that accent Charles” joked Erik as he touched Raven’s shoulder. Raven pulled back and smiled.
“Yes well, being in Clifton for even such a short amount of time would bring it back” he commented his eyes still trained on Raven, or the décor behind Raven, or her hair, or Erik’s shoes. Anywhere, but their eyes.
“I would hardly call being away for a whole year a short amount of time” laughed Raven as she swiped a couple of glasses of champagne off of the server’s tray. She stuck one out to Charles who politely declined and then she practically thrusted the glass into Erik’s hand. “That’s what? 12 months, 52 weeks, 365 days, 8766 hours, 525948 minutes. To me that’s a really long time.”
She took a long sip of her champagne watching as her boyfriend and best friend…correction…former best friend exchanged awkward glances.
“I should be going” said Charles lowly.
“Stay for dinner” insisted Erik.
“We don’t have extra space at the table” she contended while shaking her head. “I’m sorry”
There was a bite to her words even though she tried to remain neutral, but if Charles noticed he didn’t show it.
“No really my mother is waiting for me and I should have a word with her before I go” he explained. “Lots of unpacking to do”
“So you’re staying?” asked Raven surprisingly only to receive a nudge from Erik.
Charles nodded and scratched his head. “We’ll catch up soon then?”
“Definitely” affirmed Erik leaning against the back of the chair and taking a sip of his drink.
“You didn’t call”
“I did. You didn’t answer”
“When Charles? Five minutes ago, ten minutes ago, this morning?!”
“Mother don’t be shrill”
The doors to the elevator opened and Charles stepped out into the lobby his mother hot on his heels. His eyes traveled to the glass of scotch in her hand no doubt she was at least on her third or fourth.
“If you don’t want me to be here then I’ll leave”
Charles swallowed the lump in his throat as Sharon took one moment too long to answer, but finally she recovered and shook her head not one piece of blonde hair falling out of place.
“No” she said pinching the bridge of her nose. “I’m just surprised. You know how I dislike surprises. Come along stay for dinner”
Charles looked towards the exit doors. “I’d rather not I have some unpacking to do and Emma is home right?”
Sharon couldn’t hide the slight roll of her eyes. “Yes, although I believe her last day is tomorrow. Please let me know if she has that hideous boyfriend of hers at the house”
“It’s not a house mother it’s a hotel room” he corrected in monotone.
“I’ll see you at home Charles we’ll talk then” she said ignoring his last comment. “And we will be talking”
“Looking forward to it” he murmured sarcastically as she turned back towards the closed elevator doors.
Charles let himself into the Xavier hotel suite that his mother had taken refuge, because she hated the last house she lived in. Apparently she was remodeling the whole place and needed somewhere temporary to stay. He dragged along behind him a rolling suitcase and shut the door. A frustrated voice carried through the small hallway that led into the living room and there was where he spotted his sister Emma, sitting on one side of the couch dressed in a white velour tracksuit, her long hair in a messy bun, angrily flipping through a paper book. On the other side was whom Charles recognized from pictures to be Emma’s current squeeze of the month, Sebastian Shaw.
He’s an assistant manager at AT&T, and I met him at one of my acting classes. Mom flipped a shit when I told her so naturally I’m going to date the guy and have sex with him on her bed at least once. Maybe leave some polaroids around…what do you think Charlie?
That was the gist of the information that Charles managed to get from Emma, but that was from a week or so ago. Sebastian was the first one to spot him as the couch faced the opposite way and Emma was too busy reading to notice him out of her peripheral vision.
“Who the fuck are you?” barked Sebastian as he stood up confrontationally. Nice welcome wagon.
“Hello to you too” replied Charles his grip tightening on the handlebar of the luggage.
“It’s Charles you lunatic!” cried out Emma as she tossed her reading material aside and practically jumped over the couch to hug Charles. “Oh my God, Charles!”
Emma was a good three inches taller and two years older than Charles himself, they both shared naturally pale complexions, and blue eyes that enticed any living creature. Emma was blonde like their mother where Charles was a brunette like their father. She wasn’t a fan of color always choosing to wear neutral colors such as white, cream, or black. Her answer to people when she tells them white is her favorite color, ‘because white is a blank canvas, every, and anything goes with it, it’s the sign of new beginnings’. Emma was always searching for a new beginning.
"Why didn't you tell me you were coming into the city?" she asked slapping his shoulder.
"I'm sorry honestly I didn't decide to come back until last night and here I am"
"You must be so jet lagged" she observed as she saw his slouching form, and the dark circles under his eyes. "Listen go start on some unpacking, get a shower, and I'll have ole' Sebastian gone by then"
Charles looked to Sebastian who was still eyeing him warily, his hands in his crisp khaki pants, the way his black polo fit against his upper body told Charles that he must have a fit body as well.
"I'm sorry if I interrupted anything" apologized Charles. Sebastian looked like he wanted to say 'well you did' but instead the man let out a smirk.
"You actually saved me from her incessant ranting" he joked while turning to smile at Emma who only returned a glare.
"I don't fit as a background actor, Sebastian!" she started once more.
"Babe you gotta start somewhere...even if it is the background actor of some cleaning product"
Charles turned and left them then as they continued their conversation. His sister was aspiring to be an actress, after modeling for several years for Gap, Coca-Cola, Lubriderm, some hair product, and QVC. She had a killer 1960's classic look about herself, but her diamond exterior was hard to crack. Emma was the Queen B back at Constance before passing the torch to one Raven Darkholme. She didn't tell anyone more than they needed to know about herself, and Charles was only a witness to her crying maybe only two or three times in their life. That probably made it a little harder for her when it came to acting. Going to college to actually study acting was totally out of the question with Sharon Xavier. It was either do something practical, or be cut off. Emma may hate their mother, but she loved the comfortable life they lived. They compromised; Emma would major in Business, and do a minor in theater.
Charles found his room pretty quickly. The door was wide open as if he were being expected. A four poster bed covered with red satin sheets and a white comforter sat in the middle of the room. At the foot was a cushioned bench where he discarded his backpack on. The room held other normal furniture to be expected, a desk in one corner, a nightstand equipped with an iPod deck and telephone next to the bed. The walls were a stark white except for the stripped red and white wallpaper that lined the lower half beneath the molding.
New beginnings, he thought to himself before moving to the double doors which lead to the walk in closet. On the wooden rods held few hangers, but towards the back sat a few cardboard boxes marked with his name with Emma's handwriting. A small smile formed as he walked in and went down on his knees in front of the boxes.
“You bro are in need of a serious haircut”
Charles turned his head towards the entrance of the closet to find Emma leaning against the doorway arms crossed.
“And you are in a serious need for better taste in boyfriends” he countered with a smirk before turning back to the boxes in front of him working to rip the tape off. Behind him he heard Emma snort.
“You don’t like him? Big surprise.” she stated humorlessly. She watched him as he fumbled for the end of the tape managing to halfway strip it off before he stood up and pushed the box out. “Mom wanted to put those in storage with everything else, but I figured you would be coming home for the holidays”
Charles didn’t say anything, but began walking to the desk to fish around for scissors or something sharp to cut the tape with.
“The holidays that are in a little over two months?” she pushed further.
“I missed everyone here ok Emma” Charles said exasperatedly. He sighed and sat on the bench at the foot of the bed. He clasped his hands together and looked up at her. Seeing her skeptical look as she stared at him Charles let himself smile. “Especially you my dear”
“Bullshit” Emma muttered while shaking her head. “But I’ll let it go for now until you’re ready to talk”
Charles stood up, walked over to Emma and gently laid his hands on either side of her face. “You are my world Emma. If there was anything to say I would tell you. So please don’t look at me like that”
Her face still clearly said, you are still full of shit, however, she dropped it.
“I was going to head back to campus tonight before our dear mother came home, but how about we head to dinner at Vespa?”
“Wonderful” he cheered before releasing her face and watching her nod. Emma gave him a kiss on the cheek and retreated to her room to get ready.
Dinner was a nice quiet affair save for a couple run ins with his peers from St. Judes, and Emma threatening to crush any cell phones under her Prada Stilettos if she even saw their cell phones being taken out of their pockets. They dined over seared scallops, spaghetti squash, tiramisu, and drank Moscato well into closing time. Charles carefully constructed conversations to mostly focus on Emma, but as they sat in the cab her head on his shoulder lethargic from dinner she managed to bring up the one subject that even Charles himself didn’t know how to handle.
“So what about you and Raven?” she asked quietly hooking an arm under his comforted by the warmth of his body.
Charles didn't know how to answer that one so he settled for telling her that Raven was ecstatic to see him. When he abruptly left for Clifton last summer he hadn't left as much an even an opportunity for Gossip Girl to blog his departure. It was only the evening after where his disappearance started making the rounds. Then came the text messages from his entire class and then some.
But Raven and her heartbreaking phone calls that he sent straight to voicemail and then came her sad at first, raging bitch later, text messages that after the second day back in London he proceeded to discard his cell phone into a river cutting off his communication to Manhattan.
It seemed as if no one was going to go the extra mile to mail him overseas, but there was that one letter that he did receive; one letter that was stained with tears that he had shed well into the night under his comforter at Clifton; the letter that was burning a hole through a velvet box hidden in his sock drawer, which had previously contained cufflinks, his very first, that Raven bought for his 13th birthday.
The letter...the very first and last that Erik Lensherr had sent after his departure.
He unconsciously squeezed Emma's hand and placed a kiss on top of her head. They finally arrived back at The Palace Hotel a little after 11 where Charles climbed out and reluctantly shut the door behind him leaving Emma inside. She poked her head out, painted pink lips forming a smile.
"I'm just over at NYU baby brother if you need anything, and I'll be back for Thanksgiving break" she assured him with a light swat on his leg at the pout he was giving her. "It's so nice to see you...actually in person and not over Skype. Are you going to be ok here with Sharon?"
Charles chuckled. "You know it wouldn't hurt for you to refer to her as mum"
"I haven’t called her mom since my cotillion when she tried to upstage me with my escort, and she hasn't been a mother for as long as I can remember"
"She tries" defended Charles. "With Dad's death..."
Emma visibly twitched at that and sat back in her seat making Charles lean into the window.
"Be safe out there beautiful sister of mine"
With that the taxi drove off into the night with Charles staring longingly after it. Hands in pockets Charles walked into The Palace Hotel nodding to the doorman when he passed them and greeting the concierge as he made his way to the elevators. Once arriving he didn't even have to push the button as one of them opened right in front of him. There stood Cain Marko an arm wrapped possessively around a red headed girl's waist. Charles would have tried to dash off to the side if not for the fact that Cain Marko made eye contact with him almost immediately.
"Charles Xavier" he announced, the name rolling off his tongue harshly.
"Cain Marko" Charles responded back nodding to both Cain and his present company. Cain stepped out of the elevator releasing his hold on the ginger. Charles moved to occupy the now empty elevator, but Cain laid a hand on his chest stopping him from walking further.
"A drink" proposed Cain. ", to celebrate your return"
“Maybe tomorrow night” offered Charles trying to side step his classmate. Cain clucked his tongue and blocked Charles’ exit once again.
“I don’t take no for an answer Xavier” he said sneering eye level with Charles. “and I suppose neither does Erik. Does he?”
“What are you talking about?” asked Charles a little too defensively. Cain turned towards the woman who was waiting for Cain impatience written on her face. Cain walks over and says a few words to the woman as Charles contemplates hitting the elevator button again if curiosity wasn’t poking at him.
“This way” motioned Cain towards the direction of the hotel bar as his lady friend made her exit out. Charles stuffed his hands in his pockets and reluctantly followed Cain.
Erik clicked through the Dartmouth website distractedly before minimizing it to reveal Gossip Girl's website. Biting his lower lip Erik typed in 'Charles Xavier' in the tracking search bar. A page promptly appeared displaying a history of blasts, whereabouts, brief history, and photos of Charles. It was in the same layout that the rest of his classmates at both Constance and St. Judes had.
Normally Erik didn't indulge in any of Gossip Girl's antics. He never took word of mouth as truth unless it was coming from the person themselves. The only reason he was subscribed to her (or even him) in general was in case any news about Charles popped up. Truthfully, he forgot that it was even active after 6 months of no word of his whereabouts or happenings. Not that he should have expected to. He doubted that even the Gossip Queen herself had spies at Clifton.
He found himself staring at a picture of Emma and Charles walking arm in arm out of The Palace Hotel towards a taxi. A goofy grin was plastered on his face as Emma placed a kiss on his cheek.
Out of the clothes he had showed up at the Darkholme's in, Charles was sporting grey slacks that fit his form nicely, a black button down, and a grey vest to match.
Erik shut his MacBook with a frustrated huff and rolled over onto his back. Did he dare try contacting Charles again? Could their friendship be repaired or did he fuck that up with the one night he may have had one too many martinis and access to a pen...slipped a letter in an envelope and immediately stuck it in the out box. He only remembered even writing the letter when he found 8 crumpled wads of papers that were apparently rough drafts to his 'fuck you. Forget what happened at the Parker wedding. It was a mistake' letter.
Getting in touch with Charles to apologize several days later was damn near impossible. His phone was shut off, email deactivated, and even a follow up letter was left unanswered. It was promptly forwarded back to him unopened. He called Clifton for a last attempt at communication and was told that Charles requested that no one but family be able to correspond with him.
The only way he knew how to cope was to amp up his pot smoking habits, train harder than ever with his Lax team, and dedicate all his remaining attention to Raven. That was also when he was not meeting with college advisors, tutoring classmates on their French, and sneaking off to work on his 1968 Ford Thunderbird that he had planned to road trip it with Charles to California well that was before last summer happened that changed their relationship.
“I think the bathroom’s this way!” said Charles loudly his voice echoing throughout the empty corridor of the venue. Erik chuckled and grabbed Charles’ shoulders keeping his friend from going right instead of straight.
“Actually right here” said Erik guiding Charles just a few more steps down the hall before they came before The Oak Room. Erik opened the door to the empty room and gently pushed Charles inside and shut the door behind them. The music coming from the adjacent ballroom was now muffled to Erik’s relief. It was already three hours into the Parker wedding reception at Gotham Hall and his head was killing him. As usual Charles had taken to be the life of the party dancing and flirting with every eligible girl, downing shots, and beforehand their little circle had smoked the weed that Charles and Erik managed to score from his dealer. He knew he would be nursing Charles in the morning which wasn’t new to him either, but he didn’t mind it.
“Erik I don’t think we’re supposed to be in here” whispered Charles as he spun around to face Erik. “I think this is someone’s study”
True, the room was decorated with solid wood paneling, to the far right was a fireplace and leather seating while directly in front of them was a long wood table, however it was just another reception room.
“Perhaps you should stop thinking” Erik teased as he tapped the side of Charles’ temple lightly. Charles grabbed Erik’s hand lightly moving it away from his face.
“That hurts” he lied with a shit eating grin that made Erik’s heart skip a couple beats. The way Charles was looking at him with those glassy blue eyes made him want to drown in them and made him feel uncomfortable at the same time.
“Hurry up before Raven and Emma come looking for us” he said pathetically knowing full well that the girls long ditched their dates to hang out with the other girls who wanted to dance and not be subjected to guy conversations. He just wanted Charles to stop looking at him like that.
Charles reluctantly released Erik’s hand a little shocked with himself for having held onto it for longer than necessary. He turned to walk only to end up stumbling on his feet again. Charles cursed softly and once again felt hands on his arms to steady him. Now that his adrenaline was slowing down everything else was catching up to him making his vision partially swim and he just hoped his night wouldn’t have to be cut short. He knew Erik would put him in a car and take him home if he thought Charles was partying too hard for his liking. Especially after that scare he put his actual friends, Emma and his mother through several months ago.
But more on that later…
“What would you do without me Xavier?” asked Erik as he placed his arm around Charles’ torso and moving Charles arm to come around his.
“Let’s hope we never have to find out” he answered painfully aware that he was slowly getting aroused just by the mere touch of his best friend. He tried not to stare at Erik at all that day, however as the night wore on it was harder and harder not to. The fitted charcoal pants lined the curve of his ass in a complementary way, he looked debonair with his crisp white shirt and suspenders. Erik had wanted to wear a fedora but him and Raven had convince him to leave it off. Raven’s reasoning was that Erik would get too hot, he would take off the fedora and have hat hair which was not good for photographic purposes. Charles’ reasoning had more to do with the fact that he liked imagining running his hands through his hair which can be quite unruly at times like his own.
Erik deposited Charles by the bathroom door and released his hold. Charles groaned, but Erik interpreted it differently.
“Are you gonna puke?” asked Erik worriedly. “Do you need me in there with you?”
Charles chuckled and Erik flicked his arm with his finger. “Not funny dick”
Charles opened the door. “Don’t worry Erik I’m fine!”
He turned to enter the bathroom and cried out when he came face to face with his mother.
“Charles” she whispered poking him in the chest. “Charles”
“Mmph” groaned Charles as he was abruptly pulled back into the waking world. He was spread across his king size bed the moonlight peeked through the windows serving as the only source of light.
“Charles” came another whisper. He turned over on his back groggily to see his mother still clothed in her outfit from dinner, however her curls were hanging limply by her face, and she reeked of alcohol.
“Mother what time is it?” asked Charles running a hand over his face his dream or more like his memory quickly fading from his subconscious.
“Charles I’ve missed you so much,” Sharon whispered as she laid down, head on his chest, arm across his stomach. Her short gold locks smelled faintly of honeysuckle from her favorite shampoo that she had used for much of his life. As much as that brought on memories of him being comforted by her the familiar scent of vodka assaulted his senses so much it made his stomach churn. This wasn’t the first time Sharon had stumbled into his or Emma’s room in the middle of the night drunker than any of his friends got so he just laid his hand atop her head and closed his eyes. “I don’t want anything to happen to you”
“I’m fine” said Charles knowing his words would do little comfort at this point. He supposed he only had himself to blame for her worries, but for fuck’s sake that was a year and a half ago. They laid there in silence except for his mother’s heavy breathing and he wondered if he should wake her and put her to bed as his arm was starting to fall asleep. Before he could arouse her she tightened her hold on him and sighed.
“Yes” he murmured.
“What you told me before you left…”she trailed off obviously unsure on how to word whatever she was going to say or maybe she heard the quickening of his heartbeat. He braced himself. “I want you to be happy my love, but things can be a little old fashion here and I don’t want life to be hard for you.”
Sharon shifted herself so that her chin leaned on his chest and she stared intently back at him. Charles brought himself up so that he was propped against the headboard forcing Sharon to a seated position.
“I mean does anyone else know?” she asked grabbing his hand like that would bring some comfort into the discussion. Why did she have to do this now anyway? What was the fucking point? “Raven, Erik…”
“No” he answered biting his lower lip at the mention of his estranged friends’ names.
“I’ve seen how you are with girls Charles,” continued Sharon oblivious to the unshed tears in her son’s eyes. He was now ever so grateful that she picked now to bring these things up where he could hide his face in the shadows. “I know you could have your pick of the lot perhaps it was just a phase yes?”
Something you can get over were her unspoken words. He stared at the far wall for what seemed to be the longest time. Honestly, if he really looked at it Erik was his only crush on a male, but it wasn’t like he was checking out every eligible bachelor on the UES. At Clifton he would entertain himself with a good hookup or two, but mostly he buried his head in books and homework. So perhaps it was just a phase. He knew of heterosexual girls that have had girl crushes so why did he have to put a label on himself because of one guy.
“I suppose you are right” said Charles. “Honestly, I guess I just did it for the shock factor you know how bored I can get”
“But you were so upset”
“It was the alcohol” he stated making a gesture with his fingers. “Makes your emotions magnified”
As if he needed to tell her about the effects of alcohol.
“Are we done?” asked Charles hastily wiping away a stray tear. If he was so sure then why was his chest so constricted? “I have my first day back at St. Judes and as I’m coming in late in the term I want to be on my A game”
“Of course” answered Sharon leaning in and placing a chaste kiss on his forehead. Charles didn’t even turned away from the doorway and told himself it was because it hurt to see her stumble on her way out and not because he was too disgusted to even look at her right now.